At Irving Scott, our dedicated team is committed to ensuring that every placement we make is a resounding success, especially when it comes to the intricate process of recruiting private staff. We understand the importance of providing comprehensive guidance to our clients, helping them navigate the potential pitfalls and avoid common mistakes that can arise during the recruitment process. As the old adage goes, “forewarned is forearmed,” and we strive to arm our clients with the knowledge and insights necessary to make informed decisions and secure the perfect fit for their private staffing needs.
Common mistakes in recruiting private staff:
First Common Mistake in Recruiting Private Staff: Unclear instructions
If a new maid is expected to start working immediately after being hired, even if she has the appropriate skills and has received professional training, she will unintentionally make mistakes. In order to ensure a seamless transition into the household, an experienced domestic worker should always require an onboarding procedure. A prudent employer will keep in mind to greet the new team member with the house in the condition in which it is expected to be found: clean, tidy, organized, and ready to be handled.
Second Mistake in Recruiting Private Staff: Mixing roles
sConsummate professionals who perform their duties with utmost attention to detail, Irving Scott’s candidates are the best butlers, housekeepers, nannies, mannys, handymen, and chefs on the scene. However, as mentioned here, Irving Scott’s real skill is knowing how to identify that role which will transform a household from a pleasant abode to a radiantly happy home. When inexperienced householders inadvertently invite someone to work for them who does not have the right skillset, mistakes are made. It is unwise to expect a housekeeper to be proficient as a cook unless this was made clear at the outset. A butler may not double as house manager unless sought for precisely such a double role.
Third Mistake in Recruiting Private Staff: A special word about nannies
Hiring a nanny on your own can be incredibly stressful, which is why we at Irving Scott are there to lend you a hand. We gather information and we screen candidates with insightful questions that help find the right carer and companion for your children, whether your domestic situation is traditional or unique. Avoiding clashes on childcare philosophy is a must. Trusting them to store expressed breast milk and bottle feed your new-born is essential. However equally important is fluid communication, clear expectations and a certain scale of tolerance during the trial period so that you can all adjust to one another in good faith.
Fourth Mistake in Recruiting Private Staff: What can be forgiven
Among the lovely stories that surfaced after Sir David Tang died in 2017 was one that had originally been published in the Financial Times in 2013 in which he recounted the story of his colour-blind housekeeper who had tried to fiddle the accounts by adding an extra “0” to a purchase order in ink that was appreciably different in colour from the original. He forgave the employee and made it clear that although she may cook his meals, she may not cook her books. She stayed with him another 24 years, knowing that their relationship was based in trust and forgiveness.
Fifth Mistake in Recruiting Private Staff: What can lead to dismissal
There is no checklist to say what mistakes are acceptable and which are unacceptable, although common sense dictates that theft and threats go beyond the realm of mistakes and are considered grounds for dismissal. Breaking an NDA is also a justifiable reason to remove someone from your household, although all Irving Scott candidates are fully briefed on the nature of the non-disclosure agreement they are signing with the principal and follow a code of conduct that precludes such breaches of trust.
Sixth Mistake in Recruiting Private Staff: How to hire the right person
It is Irving Scott’s role to provide employers – our clients – skills and knowledge to become deft CEOs of their own household. Domestic staff management begins the day you invite a third person into your home as a maid, nanny, chef or butler. Hiring the right person is the first step towards having a stress-free, happy and successful household.